In the world of big data and the quest to achieve a Single Customer View (SCV), the quality of data available to digital marketers is a concern. As the Digital Marketing Insights Report 2014 highlights, a lack of accurate data could have major implications for the analytics and personalisation efforts with which digital marketers are struggling to get to grips.

The digital marketer of 2014 is required to understand, identify and adapt to opportunities in a rapidly shifting world, which generates data on an unprecedented scale. However, with the level of sophisticated analytical technology available to digital marketers today, they are better placed to deliver a level of individual personalisation than ever before. There is no doubt that having the correct analytical tools in place, in combination with the right data, will enable digital marketers to develop a greater understanding of big data and provide a stable platform from which to create personalised customer campaigns.

Email continues to be the most prevalent method of customer personalisation with 92% of the survey respondents claiming to offer a level of personalisation in their email communications. This is no surprise as email marketing tools have been around for decades; but what is surprising is that a third of respondents (33%) reported that they undertake no website personalisation efforts - leaving a large gap of unfulfilled opportunity to communicate with customers in a more personalised fashion.

This is not because digital marketers don’t recognise the importance of personalisation – 51% responded that personalisation is currently either very important or critical to their digital marketing efforts – so what is the problem?

The answer: access to real-time data to drive that personalisation. The report showed that at present, 50% of marketers do not have access to real-time data. Encouragingly, by 2016 a huge 78% reported that they will have implemented a solution that utilises real-time data in one of three forms: website specific personalisation (21%), individual level interaction data (26%) and multichannel real-time decision technology (31%).

Understanding how the modern consumer interacts with a brand across both offline and online platforms is evolving as brands recognise the need to behave in a truly integrated, omni-channel way. Digital marketers are taking significant strides towards developing their understanding of how customers interact with their brands in real-time across multiple online and offline channels and devices. Investment in the right data and analytical tools to extract actionable insight from detailed customer data will ensure that digital marketers of the future are well on their way to achieving not only a SCV, but also ensuring that they treat “always on” customers in a coherent multi-channel way.

In practical terms this omni-channel understanding and personalisation empowers, for example, a call centre representative to offer a customer credit for a high value item he has browsed online. It also enables the company to avoid customer experience mistakes - such as offering a cheap insurance quote via email when the customer has just purchased via the website. When dealing in industries which have complex sales processes or registration processes, having real-time synergy between the online and offline environments allows brand representatives to provide a customer service based on individual preferences, actions and online behaviour. This personalised customer engagement can lead to increased trust within a brand, an improved experience and/or increased sales conversions.

When asked to look forward to 2016, an impressive 80% believe that personalisation will be key to their digital marketing success. To achieve those goals, investment is planned in both the analytical expertise and the technologies required to transform customer data into actionable insight that improves customer engagement, enhances the customer experience, increases business process efficiencies and Marketing ROI.

The omni-channel consumers of 2014 expect to have highly relevant and personalised interactions with a brand and the results from the Digital Marketing Insights Report 2014 demonstrate that digital marketers have the data available and are now getting to grips with the tools to deliver true one-to-one personalised marketing campaigns.

 

By Ruth Gordon, Director Digital Marketing, Teradata International and Katharine Hulls, VP Marketing at Celebrus Technologies.


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